Monday Wrap: Animal crackers

Posted April 27, 2015

Animals ruled the day Monday as the General Assembly kicked off its last week before crossover deadline on Thursday.

The House approved legislation spurred by Rocky Mount school children to declare the bobcat North Carolina's official state cat, although lawmakers from the mountains were assured that the designation doesn't convey any special protection status for rogue bobcats in those parts.

Meanwhile, a House committee passed a bill that would allow people who want to drink raw milk to buy part ownership in cows as a way to get around a state ban on selling unpasteurized milk. State agriculture officials oppose the measure, so its future is uncertain.

Not really an animal, but a "catfish amendment" popped up in another House committee. A proposal to require cities and towns to seek county approval to condemn property outside of their boundaries failed when an amendment was attached that would have required counties to seek state approval before they could condemn anything.

Other than animal-related measures, the House approved a ban on powdered alcohol, a bill that would allow people to break into locked vehicles to rescue children and a study on body cameras worn by law enforcement officers.

The Senate approved a study on whether to privatize the state ferry system, a prohibition on cities dictating the appearance of homes and a measure calling for the state and state contractors to divest from Iran's energy industry.


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